Fudgy Homemade Brownies

$3.93 recipe / $0.44 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.78 from 22 votes
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These are some seriously rich fudge brownies, guys. Like, if you’re not really into chocolate, you might want to just skip this one because this homemade brownie recipe is about as close as you can get to fudge while still being a brownie. Consider the lines blurred. But if you like ’em thick, rich, fudgy, and moist, these are the homemade brownies for you!

P.S. Did I mention that you can make this incredible brownie recipe in just one bowl? Yeah, they’re easy AND delicious!

A stack of fudgy homemade brownies.

Fudge Brownies vs. Cake Brownies

There are two main camps when it comes to brownies: fudge brownies and cake brownies. Fudge brownies are dense, chewy, and rich. Cakey brownies are lighter and fluffier, and just more cake-like in texture. I’m definitely all about those fudge brownies, so that’s what we have here. But not just any fudge brownies, SUPER fudgy brownies.

Ingredients for Homemade Brownies

Here’s what you’ll need to make these insanely rich homemade brownies:

  • Butter: It’s all about the butter. Butter gives these brownies a super rich and delicious flavor and texture. We used salted butter for this recipe.
  • Cooking oil: Mixing just a touch of cooking oil into the melted butter helps the texture of the brownie stay super moist after it cools. Just two tablespoons makes a WORLD of difference.
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder: This is where a bulk of the chocolate flavor comes from in the brownies.
  • Granulated sugar: Plain white sugar gives the brownies plenty of sweetness and keeps the texture chewy and moist.
  • Eggs: Eggs give the brownies strength and helps them bake into a sliceable texture. They also help give the brownies just enough airy lift so that they’re soft and delicious, yet still fudgy.
  • Vanilla extract: Vanilla and chocolate go together like peanut butter and jelly. The vanilla just gives the chocolate a touch of extra richness.
  • Salt: A little bit of salt helps the chocolatey flavor pop.
  • All-purpose flour: Flour provides body to the brownie so that you’re not just eating melted chocolate.
  • Chocolate chips: Chocolate chips stirred into the brownie batter gives an extra dose of chocolatey goodness in every bite! They’re optional, but definitely take the brownie to the next level.

Brownie Flavor Variations

If you want to take your homemade brownies in a new direction, here are a few extra ingredients you can add to make the recipe your own:

  • Nuts: walnuts, pecans, or peanuts are all great in brownies
  • Instant coffee or espresso: A little instant coffee in the brownie batter will give the brownies a cafe mocha flavor. You’ll only need a couple of tablespoons mixed in.
  • Marshmallows: Stir some mini marshmallows into the brownie batter with peanuts for a rocky road brownie.
  • Peanut butter: Replace ½ cup of the butter with peanut butter and/or replace the chocolate chips with peanut butter chips for a chocolate-peanut butter brownie.
  • Crushed Oreos: Stir some crushed Oreos into the brownie batter for a cookies and cream variation.
  • Dried cherries: Stir dried cherries into the brownie batter for a chocolate cherry-flavored brownie.
  • Caramel sauce: Drizzle caramel sauce over the brownie batter before baking for a chocolate caramel finish.
  • Blondies: Or if you really want to switch things up, make these rich & chewy Blondies! They’re similar to brownies, but instead of cocoa powder they’re made with brown sugar, vanilla extract, and brown butter. So good!
Overhead view of cut brownies scattered on a surface.

How to Make Brownies Fudgy

The secret to making rich, moist, fudgy brownies is all in the type of fat you use and how you use it. Butter offers the best flavor for brownies, but because it’s solid at room temperature, adding a little cooking oil to the butter helps keep the brownies extra soft and moist as they cool.

Using melted butter instead of cold butter also helps keep the brownies extra rich and fudgy. When solid butter is creamed together with sugar, it aerates the batter creating a light cake-like texture in the brownie. Melted butter can’t trap air in the same way, resulting in a dense, rich brownie.

What Type of Chocolate to Use for Homemade Brownies

This recipe calls for chocolate in two forms: unsweetened cocoa powder and chocolate chips. I used a generic cocoa powder because I wanted to make sure these brownies would still be excellent even on a budget (they are), but if you have room in your budget for a higher quality cocoa powder, your brownies will only get better.

As for the chocolate chips, you can choose just about anything. Semi-sweet, dark, mint, peanut butter, large, small, whatever. Anything goes when it comes to the chips! This is a great way to use up leftover chips that you might have in your pantry. ;)

How to Store Homemade Brownies

After baking the brownies, allow them to cool completely to room temperature. Once cooled, they can be individually wrapped in plastic or placed in an air-tight container and stored at room temperature for up to three days, or refrigerated for about five days. For longer storage, the brownies can be frozen in a freezer bag for about three months. Frozen brownies can be easily thawed at room temperature in about 30 minutes. I love cutting them into bite-sized pieces and freezing so I can have a little nibble of brownie whenever the craving hits!

A hand holding a stack of super fudgy homemade brownies.
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Super Fudgy Homemade Brownies

4.78 from 22 votes
These super fudgy homemade brownies are thick, rich, extra-chocolatey, and super moist. It's the ultimate homemade brownie recipe!
Side view of a stack of fudgy homemade brownies.
Servings 9
Prep 15 minutes
Cook 40 minutes
Total 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 12 Tbsp butter (salted) ($1.32)
  • 2 Tbsp cooking oil ($0.08)
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder ($0.42)
  • 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar ($0.20)
  • 2 large eggs ($0.42)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract ($0.56)
  • 1/4 tsp salt ($0.01)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour ($0.05)
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips ($0.83)

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Melt the butter in a large bowl in the microwave (or in a saucepot and then transfer to a bowl).
  • Add the cooking oil and cocoa powder to the melted butter and whisk until smooth.
  • Whisk the sugar into the chocolate mixture until evenly incorporated, then whisk in the eggs, vanilla extract, and salt.
  • Stir in the flour until it forms a thick batter. Finally, fold in the chocolate chips.
  • Prepare an 8×8-inch baking dish by coating it with butter or non-stick spray, then laying in a piece of parchment paper (the paper does not need to cover all sides of the dish). Add the brownie batter to the prepared dish, then spread it out evenly.
  • Bake the brownies in the preheated oven for 40 minutes. The brownies will be quite soft and moist, even when fully baked.
  • Remove the brownies from the oven and let them cool for 10 minutes before lifting them out of the baking dish. Slice into nine pieces and serve.

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Nutrition

Serving: 1brownieCalories: 374kcalCarbohydrates: 44gProtein: 4gFat: 22gSodium: 205mgFiber: 3g
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Video

How to Make Fudgy Homemade Brownies – Step by Step Photos

Butter in a bowl

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Melt ¾ cup (12 Tbsp, or 1.5 sticks) butter in a large bowl. I use a microwave, but you can also do this in a saucepot and then transfer it to a bowl.

Cocoa powder added to melted butter.

Whisk ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder and 2 Tbsp cooking oil into the melted butter until smooth.

sugar added to the butter and chocolate.

Whisk 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar into the butter and cocoa mixture.

Eggs and vanilla added to batter in the bowl.

Whisk two large eggs, 2 tsp vanilla extract, and ¼ tsp salt into the batter.

flour added to the bowl of brownie batter.

Stir ¾ cup of all-purpose flour into the brownie batter until evenly combined.

chocolate chips being added to the brownie batter.

Fold ½ cup chocolate chips into the brownie batter.

Brownie batter in the prepared baking dish.

Coat an 8×8-inch baking dish in butter or non-stick spray, then lay parchment paper in the dish (it doesn’t need to cover all sides, it just makes it easy to lift the brownies out of the dish). Transfer the batter to the prepared baking dish and spread it smooth.

Baked brownies in the baking dish.

Bake the brownies in the preheated 350ºF oven for 40 minutes. The brownies will be very soft and moist when hot, so let them cool for 10 minutes before removing them from the dish.

sliced brownies on a piece of parchment paper.

Once the brownies are slightly cooled, you can use the parchment to lift them out of the baking dish. You can cut them while still warm (they will still be quite soft) or let them cool even further for cleaner cuts.

Side view of a stack of fudgy homemade brownies.

Enjoy all that fudge brownie goodness! 🤤

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Comments

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    1. The cooking time shouldn’t be too much different. I’d check with a toothpick at 40 minutes and if the batter is still clinging to the toothpick then check it again in five minutes.

  1. This is our family’s “go to” brownie recipe. It’s quite rich, so a little goes a long way!

  2. If I only have unsalted butter, would that work? I’m guessing I may need to add salt but have clue how much. Thanks in advance for any advice!

    1. There is a lot of butter in this recipe so using unsalted would definitely change it unless you add more salt to compensate. A quick Google search tells me that you’ll need ¼ tsp salt for every ½ cup of butter, but I haven’t actually tested this to verify how it would turn out for this recipe.

      1. In case anyone else is wondering – using unsalted butter + 3/8tsp salt works just fine here! I’ve made this recipe a number of times now with that substitute. :) SUPER reliable results (unlike some other brownie recipes I’ve used), comes together fast enough to actually appease my 9yo son, it’s become my go-to brownie recipe!

  3. Liked the chocolate flavor and texture but found it to be a bit too sweet sometimes. Can we reduce the sugar or would we need to balance it with something else like more flour? Not sure about the chemistry of it

    1. I’d need to test it to find out how much it alters the outcome. Baking can be a bit finicky sometimes!

  4. These are so good! The bake time on mine was shorter, 35 minutes instead of 40, but everyone’s oven can run a little different. My family and friends loved these brownies and they were gone quick! These are the perfect brownie to pair with some ice cream.

    1. YES!! Beth and I chop them into little squares and freeze them. Then we gobble them up like “brownie bites.” xoxo -Monti